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City: Assiniboine in Brandon has likely peaked

Posted by Adam in Local Weather, 7/3, 3:20 PM

Brandonites appear to have been given permission to at least half exhale with news Friday afternoon that flows along the Assiniboine River through the city looks to have reached a peak following historic rainfall earlier in the week. 

The City of Brandon in a Friday afternoon media release that the Assiniboine River at 1st Street measured 1174.07 ft. At a drop of 4 inches from this morning and 6 inches from late yesterday afternoon, it’s said that the river is likely to have seen its peak. 

For the full City of Brandon media release, please visit:
https://www.brandon.ca/public-notices-details?var=5938

Concern remains around the dam near Rivers upstream, which the Province re-iterated on Friday has the potential for structural failure in connection with unprecedented flows after this week’s rain primarily from the same record-breaking storm system that effected Brandon on Sunday. The dam was on Friday said to remain intact. Any failure of the dam would impact flows on the Little Saskatchewan River, which eventually flows into the Assiniboine West of Brandon. 

The City on Friday afternoon shared information on projections on potential flash-flooding in the event of a Rivers Dam failure, where it was said that worst-case future peak levels would be comparable to the Assiniboine flood of 2011 at Brandon:

In a Friday morning Brandon Sun story speaking to potential impacts of dam failure in Brandon, Manitoba infrastructure minister Ron Schuler indicated that no significant issue was anticipated at present.

"It’s not that we feel the structure is going to collapse imminently. Hardly. It’s just that we don’t have confidence in the structure as it stands and out of an abundance of caution we are suggesting that people evacuate." Schuler stated.

The city's dike system at 1st street is built to sustain a level of 1186 feet, approximately 12 feet higher than present levels.


A view of the 18th Street and Grand Valley Road intersection

In connection with the Province's loss of confidence in the dam at Rivers, the City of Brandon issued evacuation preparation orders to citizens in low-lying areas earlier in the week. No evacuation has been ordered at present, though the City on Friday continued to urge residents in low-lying areas to be prepared to evacuate if flash flooding occurs. The opening in the city's dike system at the intersection of Grand Valley Road and 18th Street North was filled Tuesday evening into Wednesday.

Future river levels are also potentially effected by future weather. The current Environment and Climate Change forecast for Brandon calls for a 30% chance of showers with the risk of a thunderstorm late Friday afternoon as well as overnight Friday into Saturday. Showers with thunderstorm potential are also in the forecast for the weekend. For the most recent forecast, please visit https://weather.gc.ca/city/pages/mb-52_metric_e.html

Updated: July 3, 5:40pm. Added city flash-flooding worst-case projection

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